From Prime Minister to Prime Suspect – that’s Boris Johnson’s life!
After the Cabinet Office refused to provide every WhatsApp message and notebook Johnson made during the Covid-19 pandemic to the inquiry into the government’s handling of that crisis, it is being suggested that it is because they contain incriminating material that could bring down the UK’s Conservative government.
The government added fuel to this fire when the Cabinet Office said it doesn’t even have the material demanded by inquiry chairwoman Baroness Hallett – which suggests that it has been given back to Johnson himself so he can get busy deleting anything suspicious.
This latest scandal is another blow for current prime minister Rishi Sunak, whose protestations of “integrity, professionalism and accountability at every level” when he took office last October now stand in tatters.
Sunak is the one who claimed that the government has handed over “tens of thousands of documents”, as if that makes a difference:
Sleazy Sunak's promise of 👎 is being blown out of the water if his govt refuse to hand over Spaffer's diaries -prepared to waste tax payers cash on a judicial review.
No way to earn trust is it. https://t.co/NM2gaG4raO pic.twitter.com/S89UVoMFT1
— Carole Hawkins (@hawkins_carole) May 30, 2023
He can say that, but we all know – dont we? – that it isn’t the number of documents being handed over that matters – it’s the information they contain.
Lord Falconer made this clear:
Lord Falconer saying what we all know
The government are keeping back the WhatsApp messages with them & Boris Johnson because it’ll take them down with him
— kerry ✊💙Save Our NHS (@hewitson10) May 30, 2023
If all the material isn’t handed over by 4pm tomorrow (Thursday, June 1, 2023) then the government will have committed a criminal offence and may face court action. To prevent that, it may request a judicial review – but this would only be a delaying action:
Adam Wagner KC – "If the 4pm deadline passes & the government decides it's not going to comply in full with Baroness Hallett's ruling, then in theory they could be committing a criminal offence… & criminal proceedings could be taken… "#KayBurley pic.twitter.com/hO2GbBF45i
— Haggis_UK 🇬🇧 🇪🇺 (@Haggis_UK) May 30, 2023
Why would the government want to delay? Well, if it has given the material back to Boris Johnson, then…
Boris Johnson managed to lose all his communications into the Jennifer Arcuri investigations when he was mayor, so we never found out if he was misappropriating our funds then.
I, for one, am sick of Johnson getting away with hiding or destroying evidence. It should be illegal. https://t.co/2feqgNBZEg pic.twitter.com/mrB3nflxCv
— Bertha Mason (@ThornfieldHall) May 30, 2023
If he has done it before, who’s to say he won’t do it again, given the opportunity?
The public demand for the information to be provided in full is growing. The words of former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen, who nearly died of Covid-19, are particularly poignant:
Dear Cabinet Office
Our lives were in your hands.
Whatever you're hiding was a matter of life and death to us.
Some of us were lucky to survive.
Many did not.
We're entitled to know why.
Every little bit of it.
— Michael Rosen 💙💙🎓🎓 (@MichaelRosenYes) May 30, 2023
And this long message from Dr Andrew Meyerson is a reminder of the wider context:
225,000 people have died in this country from COVID-19 and millions continue to suffer from its long term effects. We lost family, friends, patients, co-workers, and it caused disruption to our lives and livelihoods on a scale never before seen in our lifetimes.
If we… pic.twitter.com/RqLikGiw8j
— Dr Andrew Meyerson (@andrewmeyerson) May 30, 2023
But let’s not forget Johnson’s side of it. Having seen diary material revealing further potential breaches of Covid-19 pandemic lockdown law, his government-appointed (and publicly-funded) legal team passed it on to the police – so Johnson fired the lawyers and hired a new crew costing four times as much, for whom he still wants us (and that includes you) to pay:
And he is being given £1.25m from you to fund his cover up of Covid Law breaking.
— BladeoftheSun (@BladeoftheS) May 30, 2023
It seems the authorities are doing everything they can to make this inquiry as easy on Boris Johnson as it can possibly be.
Did you lose friends and/or family members to Covid-19? If so, how do you feel about all this? And who have you told?
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